Alaska Airlines has one of the hidden gems of value specially for folks staying on the west coast in one of the Alaska hubs to Hawaiian Islands. One value is booking a direct award flight (provided it is available at lowest mileage level) using British Airways Avios. The other better value is flying in "first class" on revenue ticket for Economy class ticket cost or less. This can be best maximized if you have companion travelling with you. Let me explain you this!
You need two different kind of certificates to fly first at the cost of Economy. These are:
So, let me walk you through this with example below:
Flying from SJC (San Jose, CA) to OGG (Maui, Hawaii) in September around Labor day weekend of 2015:
You need to "enable" the "Advance Search" option on Alaska Airlines website as highlighted in red in below screen shot.
On the next page you will see "drop down box" for Upgrade Certificate type and a Discount code field box as shown on screen shot below. Select "MVP Gold Guest Upgrade" from the drop down for now and keep the "Discount code" field empty for now just to see the prices.
As you can see in below picture there is availability with "Upgradable Space" shown. The one where the "U" symbol besides the flight detail is highlighted shows the Upgrade availability is there for instant upgrade. You should look out for "only this kind of upgrade" as it is guaranteed upgrade space.
Let's do the above search again by entering the discount code you would have in your account provided by BofA for your Alaska Airlines companion certificate. The companion ticket costs $99 + taxes & fees only. Below is the new cost with companion discount code being applied.
As you can see from above two snap shots. The initial cost of $485 for the 2nd passenger or the companion passenger has been reduced to mere $146 only. So, essentially you bought the round trip ticket for 2 persons on Alaska Airlines "first class" for just ~$631 in total. As you can see from below snap shot the best bargain you can get using combination of certificates.
So, remember next time you travel on Alaska Airlines you might be actually able to travel in first class for less than Economy/Coach class fare.
Who does not like to vacation or travel? I believe very few if not none. But once you decide you want to vacation or travel, the primary questions is What's the cost involved and where to go? If your primary goal is to travel on cheap and you are flexible on dates and destination then read on..
As the world of internet as evolved there are great deals for travel available online all the time. Knowing where to look will help you getting started on that exciting journey. This post is primarily to list all the resources available for searching those cheap flights. If your goal is flexibility of dates but not on the destination then you might want to check my post on "How to find best flight deals", otherwise read on.
Flyertalk Mileage Run Forum - Although primarily used by folks who are chasing the Elite status, this is a great forum as the primary intent is to "travel anywhere" for cheap or at minimum cost as possible. Primarily targeted for US based flyers you will find great deal of information for "cheap tickets" to sort of places around the world. All you need to do is browse through it and see what works for you and you are on your way to your destination.
TheFlightDeal - This is a gem of a site which routinely publishes good deals for travel to various destinations around the world. Again it is targeted primarily with deals from the U.S. but for within the U.S. as well as around the world. Most of the fare published are 6.0 cents/mile or lower and a great deal if you are looking for a quick getaway.
AirFareWatchDog - This is a site where you can enter just the "Departure City" and it will do a search for all sort of destination where you could travel (with no particular priority or mention of how good the deal is). The best part is you can create alerts for the city pair you want to travel and it will alert you as per your selected criteria.
HolidayPirates - This is another website which regularly publishes good fares starting from Europe. Look often enough and you might end up on one of the error fares that happens once in a while.
Exbir - This is one of the other European websites which routinely publishes good deals to be had from Europe. Hop on to it and you will end up with great fare to your beloved destination from Europe and around.
Take help from above sites and visit that exciting destination you never knew about. Keep travelling. Enjoy!
US Airways is running the Sale of miles till 31st of May 2013. Usually the miles sale for 3.5 cents/mile, but every month they run either a public or targeted miles purchase offer at discounted rates. They are offering the tiered bonus this month. If you buy 50k miles you would essentially get 100k miles (50k + 50k) at a cost of $1881. Check out the snap shot below!
I would recommend buying only if you are looking for specific redemption. US Airways allows holding the award for up to 3 days. So you can hold the award and than purchase the miles which usually are credited within a day. US Airways is Star Alliance member so you can search for awards either on Aeroplan or United but need to call in for reservation. Here is the link to the award chart and booking fees.
The purchase is processed through points.com so you would not earn any "bonus" miles if you use a credit card which bonuses Air Purchases.
Tip of the hat (OneMileAtaTime).
You want to get the best rate on next big loan? Or want to buy the car you are longing for at an awesome bargain? Or want to get the Credit Card for the next free domestic flight? All these needs you to have an excellent credit. But how do you know you have great credit history?
There are three different credit monitoring agencies in the US:
Getting to know the scores of them would help identify your credit score and get the next big bargain you are looking for. But how do you find these scores for free? You can at least get the score of two of above for free.
1. Credit Sesame (Experian) : This is a website where you can create a free account and plug in all your details and it will help you get your credit score. The pull done to get your score is a soft pull and as such does not affect your credit score. The score is a close approximate of your actual Experian score. Here is the link: http://www.creditsesame.com/
2. Credit Karma (TransUnion) : Credit Karma has lot more better features in my opinion and provides tracking of various scores including Auto Insurance score as well. Again they do a soft pull on your credit and as such does not create a credit inquiry on you. It closely resembles the TransUnion Score. The link is here: https://www.creditkarma.com/
So armed with information about your credit score you would be able to make the next big decision with ease.
Disclaimer : The links provided does not earn me any commission or referral. To keep great scores make sure you always pay your dues on time.
I love traveling / backpacking. This blog focuses on 3 aspects: